Four names which most women, and indeed some men, know and love.
Quirky Manhattan apartments, whirlwind romances, and wardrobes as large as most of our homes. Sparking adoration and envy on a global scale, those girls sure knew how to live, and in the age of un-innocence did as much for post-feminism as GaGa did for visor shades.
Yet despite their lavish urban lifestyles, there was something incredibly comforting about the famous foursome - like all women, they were flawed, and as a result, seemingly ordinary people whom we could all relate to and indeed aspire to be.
But ever noticed something odd about Carrie and the gang? (Other than the occasional donning of an atrociously ridiculous hat.)
Unlike most women, and indeed the majority of men, you never (…well hardly ever), saw them cook.
Okay, so I’m being a little cynical, and in comparison to one of the shows characteristically steamy sexual encounters, ‘Cooking with Carrie,’ would unlikely be a ratings puller.
But even in the absence of such domestic scenes, we are led to believe that our girls were about as familiar with a slow cooker, as the Olsen twins are with Burger King. Pre-occupied with an abundance of hedonistic social gatherings, lunches, brunches, pre-dinner drinks and a la carte meals, book launches with h'ordeuvres and gallery openings with caviar; back in their New York pads, there must have barely been need to boil a kettle.
Yet despite all this heavy and indulgent socialising, and the consumption of enough Cosmopolitans to keep Smirnoff in pocket for the next decade, those gorgeous girls remained nothing but sickeningly slim.
Of course I’m jealous, who wouldn’t be? But really, let’s face it, it’s far from realistic.
If you asked the average woman, to eat out day and night, for a sustained period of time, without paying any meaningful consideration to exactly what she was eating, I would bet my bottom dollar (well, pound coin) that she would balloon like the Hindenburg. Add in a few dozen cocktails, frappuccinos on the go, and pretzels in the park, and I’d speculate within a couple of weeks she’d be signing up for Zumba, and subscribing to Weight Watchers Online.
But alas, I’m being cynical again, and indeed I could be wrong. Maybe Carrie and her compadres were in fact calorie counting queens; die hard health food junkies, frequenting only restaurants specialising in low-carb, high-protein entrées. Perhaps the cocktails were virgin, and the lattes skinny. I’m sure those cupcakes were in fact cleverly disguised polenta muffins, and the garden salads enjoyed during those iconic ‘ladies who lunch’ scenes, served without croutons or breadsticks, and with dressing on the side.
But surely if that were the case, wouldn’t we, the viewer, have been more aware of it? Wouldn’t we recall the utterance of phrases like, ‘I really shouldn’t, I’m watching my weight,’ or topics of discussion lending themselves to the unbelievable amount of saturated fat found in hummus.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying that eating out is the root of the world’s obesity endemic, or that a penchant for home cookery is the only way to sustain a svelte size 6. But I do feel that balancing healthy living with hectic social schedules is not quite as effortlessly achievable as Miss Bradshaw and co. would have us believe.
But, hey, Sex and the City isn’t real life is it? It’s fiction; pure unadulterated, vicarious fiction. And if realism were given as much consideration as the show’s wardrobe, the result would probably have been about as exhilarating as a game of lawn bowls.
So as much as I would be willing to sacrifice a small family of kittens for Carrie’s shoe closet * … real life just can’t be as indulgent without loosening our belts a notch, or making much more cautious choices about what and where we eat.
… Or can it?
Can we too eat out, or eat without meticulous planning, and not feel the pinch (or indeed the inch) as a result? Is it possible to maintain a life rife with social outings and seemingly lavish experiences whilst still staying in shape?
For those of you who care just an iota as to the outcome of these very questions, you will be glad to know that such sentiments sit at the heart of the very raison d’etre of The Scoffing Cow.
Over the next few months, I will embark on a journey of food exploration. I will endeavour to search for that illusive ‘healthier’ option to indulgence, and strive to assist every fashion conscious, figure loving individual to eat out, without filling out.
Fellow scoffers, foodies, fashion victims and health junkies. Gourmands, calorie counters, socialites, and fad diet dedicatees. It’s time to glutton like the glamorous girls of Manhattan, without sabotaging your drive to look like one.
Top up your Cosmo, stir your Martini, and polish your Manolo Blahniks. The Scoffing Cow isn’t about to make healthy living fun - it’s about to make fun living, healthy.
* Statement for effect only; I actually really love kittens.